Racing at Meydan Sunday provides carnival aspirants opportunity to advertise their claims

Racing at Meydan on Sunday, a non-carnival meeting of seven races, is highlighted by a pair of turf handicaps, the first of which, over 1m2f has attracted a field of nine, including Al Nayyir, an impressive 1m4f course winner three weeks ago and successful over Sunday’s track and trip on his seasonal reappearance.

Trained by Doug Watson for Elbashir Salem Elhrari, the 5yo gelded son of Dubawi will be having just his seventh start and would appear to be improving. Pat Dobbs rides.

The weights are headed by Victorous’ Withering, a 4yo colt by Mondialiste and a 1900m dirt winner at the 2022 Dubai World Cup Carnival here at Meydan. He was then runner-up over the same course and distance in the Listed Al Bastakiya on Super Saturday before struggling in the Group 2 UAE Derby.

Regular jockey Adrie de Vries is again in the saddle for Fawzi Nass on what is the colt’s first turf outing in the UAE. In two grass runs in Britain, he was runner-up once and sixth in a 1400m Listed race at Royal Ascot on just his second ever career start.

From two Bhupat Seemar runners, Tadhg O’Shea partners Bosphorus with stable apprentice Connor Planas aboard stable companion Recordman, a course and distance winner in the equivalent race in 2021, under O’Shea, but without a victory since.

Also well represented is Ahmad bin Harmash, stable jockey Ray Dawson electing to partner Influencer leaving apprentice Qais Bin Saif Al Busaidi the mount on Celestial Spheres, twice a 2400m Abu Dhabi winner in the latter half of last season.
A third Bin Harmash contender, bottom weight Light Beam, is to be ridden by Saif Al Balushi who works primarily for the trainer.

Ismail Mohammed relies on First Winter, the mount of Antonio Fresu with Mickael Barzalona and Salem bin Ghadayer combining with Mordin to complete the nonet in a wide open contest in which a case to be made for most, if not all, of the nine.

The following 1400m turf handicap shares top billing and appears equally competitive with Shadwell’s Almoreb heading the weights under the owner’s retained jockey Dane O’Neill for Musabbeh Al Mheiri.

Barzalona and Bin Ghadayer again combine, this time with Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed Al Maktoum’s Manahir, the only course and distance winner among the 11 runners.

For Godolphin and Saeed bin Suroor, Daniel Tudhope partners Open Mind, a 4yo Cable Bay gelding seeking a third career victory but first on turf, at the fifth attempt. He was successful over 1200m on his latest appearance, on the Chelmsford all-weather, in late September.

Watson saddles three, Dobbs opting to ride Boston George, with Sam Hitchcott aboard Aquaman and Oscar Chavez in the saddle on the yard’s third contender, National Bank.

O’Shea and Seemar again combine, this time with Western Symphony, Pat Cosgrave riding stable companion Ranchero.

Osama Refai has made a bright start to his training career and relies on Way Of Wisdom, the mount of Antonio Fresu and racing on turf for the first time since April 2021. A 8yo gelded son of Lonhro, he is a 1200m Meydan turf winner, at the beginning of January 2020, his most recent success.